2 TECHSHOW’s Ago – Natalie Kelly Reflects on Her Year as Chair in 2014

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We’re on a TECHSHOW countdown and with 2 days to go, we’re hopping in the WayBack Machine to hear from past chairs and take a look at What Was at TECHSHOW! See the entire 2014 agenda and website here!

KellyNatalie Kelly – ABA TECHSHOW Chair 2014
Twitter: @NatalieRKelly

What were you doing (real life job) when you were the ABA Tech show chair in YEAR? Are you still doing that same thing? If not tell us a little bit about your journey.    

When I chaired ABA TECHSHOW in 2014, I was the Director of the Law Practice Management Program for the State Bar of Georgia. Additionally, I was a part-time evening law student. I am sure I am the only law student who has chaired ABA TECHSHOW – at least I know I am the only one who had a suitcase full of law school books with them at the TECHSHOW Planning Board meetings! I continue to serve as the Director of the Law Practice Management Program for the State Bar of Georgia, and I will graduate law school in May 2016!

What was / were the notable topics/tracks of your year?

I was able to introduce a new area in the Exhibit Hall called TECHSupport where show vendors could meet with their customers for face-to-face resolutions for any of their issues using their respective programs. I was also excited to have a TECHSHOW Solutions Lab, manned by State Bar and Law Society Practice Management Advisors, to help attendees with bridging the gap between what they were learning in TECHSHOW sessions and how to get solutions in place when they returned home. I was the first Chair to introduce the State of Legal Technology session presented by the LTRC. Finally, my year as TECHSHOW Chair allowed us to bring the “How To” Track for attendees.  This track let attendees get the information and documentation they needed to use the technology being presented in the session.  An example –  “How to… Use Facebook in Your Law Firm.”

 What was the hot technology or must have service, gadget or tool or idea?

ABA TECHSHOW 2014 unveiled the Sony Digital Paper unit alongside Worldox. This pairing highlighted lawyers’ focus on mobility, workflow and a return to the idea of working in a paperless environment.

 If you had a keynote speaker who was it and what was their topic?  

Rick Klau of Google Ventures, who had been a previous ABA TECHSHOW speaker was the keynoter for 2014. He wowed one of the largest TECHSHOW audiences ever with lessons from Silicon Valley, and his take on how “data trumps opinion,” to “just say no,” and to “think big.”

Do you have any great stories or meaningful show moments to share with us?

Besides crying in joy after my year was over, I remember how special it was to have my family in attendance; and hearing approval from my teenage daughter and the teenage son of one of the Law Practice Division’s leaders. If a teenager thinks your conference is cool – you’ve accomplished something!

 Any final thoughts about your TECHSHOW experience?

Serving as the first African-American Chair of the ABA TECHSHOW Planning Board marked a highlight in my career, and I am glad I can continue to be a part of the world’s best conference for bringing lawyers and technology together. The accomplishment of diversity from the Law Practice Division is in line with its overall divisional goals, and the programming of ABA TECHSHOW continues to be one of the most beneficial offerings coming from the Division and the ABA. I am so glad to be a part of it!